Sunday, July 15, 2018
  • Tuesday, Jun. 20, 2017
Burger King's Google Stunt That Went Awry Scores Cannes Lions Direct Grand Prix
Burger King's "Google Home for the Whopper" from DAVID Miami won the Cannes Lions Direct Grand Prix as well as a Mobile Gold Lion.
Mobile Grand Prix goes to Dentsu Y&R; Humanian tops Innovation Lions; Whirlpool takes Data Innovation; Cyber recognizes a trio of Grand honorees
  • CANNES, France
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The Whopper-sized prank that went awry landed on its feet at the Cannes Lions, scoring the Direct Grand Prix, underscoring how the jury valued the risk taking of agency DAVID Miami for client Burger King. The campaign consisted of 15-second spots which posed the query, “OK, Google, what is the Whopper burger?” Any Google Home device within earshot would answer the question, bringing the Whopper into the homes of prospective customers.

But when Google Homes cited the Wikipedia entry about the Whopper, it became evident that Internet pranksters pranked back. They edited the Wikipedia entry to disparage the Whopper, including listing cyanide as among the ingredients that went into the burger.

When news got out of the sabotaged campaign, though, it became a viral hit. And the original intent of bringing the Whopper into people’s homes was fulfilled.

“Google Home for the Whopper” narrowly beat out McCann NY’s “Fearless Girl” for the Direct Grand Prix. Still, State Street Global Advisors’ “Fearless Girl” picked up three Direct Lions, Gold, Silver and Bronze, after earlier landing three Grand Prix honors--in the PR, Outdoor and Glass Lion competitions.

The Direct Lions recognize response-driven and relationship-building creativity. From 2,719 entries, 76 Lions were awarded, including 13 Gold, 21 Silver and 41 Bronze. Jury president Ted Lim, chief creative officer, Dentsu Brand Agencies, APAC, described “Google Home of the Whopper” as “outstanding, outrageous and simply incredible.'

Click here to see the Direct winners.

“Google Home for the Whopper” meanwhile also took a Gold Lion in the Mobile competition. The Mobile Grand Prix went to Dentsu Y&R Japan for Recruit Lifestyle Company’s “The Family Way” Seem app which computes sperm count. Jury president Andy Hood, head of emerging technologies, AKQA, explained that the best work has seen creatives offering solutions to some of the world’s biggest problems and the Grand Prix did just that. “It’s not just an award, it’s a statement of how we want the winning work to be and how technology can have a direct impact on people’s lives.”

The Mobile Lions celebrate device-driven creativity. From 1,297 entries, 68 Lions were awarded: 8 Gold, 24 Silver and 35 Bronze.  Click here to see the Mobile winners.

Cyber trio
The Cyber Lions recognize creativity experienced digitally to enhance a brand’s message and demonstrate results. From 2,893 entries, 110 Lions were awarded: 19 Gold, 33 Silver and 55 Bronze. Jury president Colleen DeCourcy, global chief creative officer, Wieden + Kennedy, explained that the jury selected work that embodied where technology has moved ideas forward. Three Grands Prix were honored: “Åland Index/Baltic Sea Projects” by RBK Communication, Stockholm for The Bank of Åland; “Meet Graham” by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne for Transport Accident Commission Victoria; and “Did you Mean Mailchimp?” by Droga5, New York and Mailchimp, Atlanta, that had bold originality at its heart.

This marks the second Grand Prix thus far for “Meet Graham” which on day one earned that top honor in the Cannes Lions Health & Wellness competition.

Click here to see the Cyber winners.

Creative Data
The Creative Data Lions celebrate the interplay of ideas and information, enhanced or driven by the creative use of data. From 690 entries received, 38 Lions were awarded: 5 Gold, 11 Silver and 21 Bronze. The Grand Prix went to “Care Counts” by DigitasLBi, Chicago for Whirlpool.

The “Care Counts” initiative put free washers and dryers in schools, then tracked whether this affected attendance rates. It turns out that turnout was positively impacted, giving students access to clean clothes. For thousands of children, the shame and discomfort caused by the lack of clean clothes is enough to keep them out of school.

Lauded as a special piece of work, “Care Counts” exemplified a brand “moving from storytelling, to story doing,” said Jury president Eric Salama, CEO of Kantar.

Click here to see the Creative Data winners.

From 298 entries received in Innovation, 12 Lions were awarded: 2 Gold, 4 Silver and 5 Bronze, and the Grand Prix went to “The Humanium Metal Initiative” by Åkestam Holst, Stockholm, and Great Works, Stockholm, for IM Swedish Development Partner. Per the “Humanian” program, metal from recycled illegal firearms is used to build different products such as toys and smartphone cases.

Innovation Jury president Susan Lyne, president and managing partner at BBG Ventures, praised the work for demonstrating innovation at every stage from concept to the business model, to support communities affected by gun violence.

Click here to see the Innovation winners.